A baby chick eats around 1-2 ounces of food daily. Each small chicken will need about 0.75 to 1 lb feed every week. They generally follow this eating habit for their first eight weeks. Besides regular food, baby chickens need special food to stay healthy and disease-free.
Medicated chick starter feed is one of the essential feeds for small chickens to build their immune system and improve digestive health. Most importantly, it safeguards them from coccidiosis. Here, we will help you to find the best medicated chick starter feed!
4 Best Medicated Chick Starter Feed
The mortality rate of coccidiosis can be up to 50%.
When this virus attacks baby chicks, they fail to absorb essential nutrients vital to their survival.
To reduce the risk of this illness, you want to feed your small chicken a safe, medicated chick starter feed on time.
01. Manna Pro Chick Starter
This high-quality chicken feed contains Amprolium, which is mainly a coccidiostat-formulated ingredient. Its main job is decreasing the growth of the coccidia oocysts. Besides, it allows small chickens to develop a strong immune system and fight off environmental infection.
The medicated chick starter feed has a fortified formula. Baby chickens will get higher energy from the food as it contains a good amount of vitamins and minerals. It also contains fermentable fiber sources to maintain a healthy digestive system.
The chicken feed has vegetable fats, which contain various unsaturated fatty acids. It includes a decent amount of oleic and linoleic acid to provide metabolizable energy. When baby chicks become adults, these acids will enhance the egg yolk color of the hens.
In addition, the formula includes 18% protein, which is necessary for their first eight weeks of growth. It will build their muscles and strengthen them with better bone integration. They will gain a balanced weight.
|✅ A crumble-formed chicken feed to ensure consistent nutrition in every bite||🔻 Crumbles could be smaller, especially for recently hatched baby chicks|
|✅ An easy and convenient option for a quick feed to increase the digestibility of nutrients||🔻 The price is a bit higher than some other options|
|✅ A healthy and complete chicken food without any chemicals, toxins, or additives|
|✅ Contains vitamins and minerals to improve metabolic processes and growing muscle or feathers|
|✅ Includes Amprolium ingredient to prevent the disease coccidiosis|
02. Scratch and Peck Starter Crumbles Chick Feed
This medicated chick starter feed is mainly a crumble version. The manufacturer has formed it into pallets and then crushed the pellet to a consistency coarser for tiny beaks. It contains 20.5% protein to grow in terms of size, muscle, and organs.
What’s more, Scratch and Peck chick feed has organic whole grains, which is around 50%. It decreases the incidence of pro-ventriculitis and improves the workability of the gizzard. The chicken feed contains sustainable grub protein, a form of insect protein.
Baby chicks will love grub protein as their regular snacks. It can keep them in good shape and health. Additionally, the chicken feed has essential oils to repel insects and soothe injuries. They have strong antimicrobial and antiparasitic properties to make your baby chick strong.
Some cheap chicken feed contains soybean seeds that can severely interfere with baby chicks’ digestion. But this high-quality medicated chick starter feed is free from soy and corn. You don’t have to worry about making them overweight.
|✅ Contains wheat, barley, peas, grubs, and other healthy ingredients||🔻 The feed at the bottom of the bag may become unusable if stored for too long|
|✅ Non-GMO Project Verified chicken feed to ensure no modification of the genetic level||🔻 Some chickens refused to eat the feed|
|✅ No corn to avoid overheating and overweight problems from excessive calories|
|✅ No Soybean seed to prevent deficiencies in vital vitamins and minerals|
|✅ Made from 100% natural ingredients to minimize diet-related health issues|
03. Homestead Harvest Non-GMO Chick Starter
GMO grains often cause heart failure in chickens. Are you looking for Non-GMO grains for your feathered friends? This option is the perfect option. You don’t have to worry about genetically modified organisms because it is one of the “cleanest” chicken feeds.
Feeding by-products can significantly affect the digestibility of nutrients in chickens’ meals. It often contains veterinary drugs, pesticides, and dioxins. This chick feed is free from by-products to ensure optimal health safety.
This medicated chick starter feed has probiotics that are live bacteria, fungi, or yeasts to help baby chickens to maintain healthy gut bacteria for optimum health. Also, the food contains kelp to deal with heat stress and develop stronger immune systems effectively.
Other than these, the chicken feed includes omega-3 fatty acids to positively affect the function of their cell receptors and properly regulate blood clotting. It also contains some herbs, which have natural antibiotics to promote growth and prevent or treat infections.
|✅ Contains several natural supplements to provide extra nutrition and benefits||🔻 May not be available in all areas|
|✅ Necessary levels of macro and trace minerals to influence absorption, secretion, and excretion||🔻 Could have a more balanced nutritional profile for growing chicks|
|✅ A combination of several vitamins to support healthy blood and muscles|
|✅ Equipped with diatomaceous earth to treat external parasites|
|✅ Non-GMO grains to ensure the cleanest and safest chicken feed|
04. Purina Start & Grow Starter Medicated Feed
Do you prefer a more balanced chicken feed for your baby chicks? If so, Purina Start & Grow appears to be an excellent choice. The feed is equipped with prebiotics to make your baby chicks healthy and productive. It will also work as a barrier to colonization by foodborne pathogens.
Worry about a healthy digestive system? Chicken food has Probiotics to become its normal bacterial flora and supports the development of other normal bacteria. It contains essential amino acids to minimize the loss of nitrogen.
In addition, high-quality food contains Marigold Extract to improve their antioxidant capacity and meat quality. It also increases the yellowness values of the carcass. The chicken feed contains Vitamin A for better bone development and improves their movements and vision.
Other than these, Purina Start & Grow is equipped with Vitamin E to improve the functioning of muscles, nerves, and the circulatory system. It also inhibits the formation of reactive oxygen species (ROS) in their cells and tissues.
|✅ Equipped with prebiotics to make the baby chicks healthy and productive||🔻 More expensive compared to many other brands|
|✅ Contains essential amino acids to minimize the loss of nitrogen||🔻 Some complained about a few bugs inside the bag|
|✅ Essential amino acids to minimize the loss of nitrogen|
|✅ Vitamin A for better bone development and improved movements|
|✅ Vitamin E enhances the functioning of muscles, nerves, and the circulatory system|
How To Choose A Medicated Chick Starter Feed?
A conscious chicken owner will not buy any medicated chick starter feed randomly.
It requires you to evaluate various factors to get the best bang for your investment.
The most important part is that your baby chicks grow healthily, strongly, and gradually.
Here you will learn the crucial points that no chicken owners should avoid.
01. Is It A Reputed And Trusted Brand?
What is the probability of buying food from a new brand?
It involves the reliability of the product.
Experts suggested buying medicated chick starter feed from a reliable brand.
The chicken food should be made from authentic sources and healthy ingredients.
02. Is It A Balanced Diet Feed?
A baby chick must eat a balanced diet meal to support its bone growth and immune system.
Feed around 18% to 20% protein initially to develop muscles and promote strength and bone integrity.
It also needs a good amount of natural whole grains, such as wheat, oats, or barley. However, oats or barley should not be more than 25%.
The following table shows a different combination of food ingredients a baby chick should eat.
|Name Of The Nutrients||Ideal Percentage|
|Grains||62% to 72%|
|Veg. Protein||15% to 18%|
|Vitamin – Mineral, Kelp, etc.||4%|
|Calcium and Phosphorus||2%|
|Fish Meal||3% to 4%|
03. Does It Contain Coccidiostat?
Choosing a medicated chick starter feed containing coccidiostat is a good rule of thumb.
This ingredient helps to prevent coccidiosis, a common intestinal disease in chicks.
Follow the instructions carefully and only use them for the recommended time period.
Do you see any health problems in your small chickens?
If so, consider consulting a veterinarian or experienced poultry keeper for advice on choosing suitable feed for your chicks.
04. Does The Feed Remain Fresh For A Long Time?
Baby chicks often show unwillingness to eat unfresh and smelly feed.
Before choosing any medicated chick starter feed, make sure you know how long it stays fresh.
Otherwise, your baby chooks may not eat it. You will have no option but to dump it.
The package quality of chicken feed affects how long the food will remain fresh.
It must be well-packaged to sustain the original taste, flavor, and smell for a long time.
05. What Is The Protein Source Of The Chick Starter Feed?
The source of protein in the chick starter feed is important.
Some feeds use animal by-products. They have poor-quality protein.
Plus, this type of protein is difficult to digest for baby chicks.
More importantly, they don’t contain enough vital nutrients for baby chickens’ development.
Look for feeds that use high-quality protein sources such as dried mealworms & red worms, dried soldier fly larvae, eggs, sprouts, seeds, insects, fish meal, etc.
06. Do You Need To Feed Your Flocks Additives?
Some chick starter feed may contain additives, such as probiotics or prebiotics.
Probiotics are live bacteria, fungi, or yeasts to help baby chickens to maintain healthy gut bacteria for optimum health.
It can help your tiny feathered friends support digestive health issues.
The primary benefit of prebiotics is to make your baby chicks healthy and productive.
It will also work as a barrier to colonization by foodborne pathogens.
Consider whether these additives are important to you after consulting with a certified veterinarian or experienced poultry keeper
07. How Good is the food packing?
A good-quality food packing protects the food from outside influences and damage.
Make sure the feed is packaged to keep it fresh and prevent pests and external microbes and bacteria from getting into it.
The most important thing is to prevent wasting food and sustain its desired quality throughout its shelf life.
It should also include all the ingredients and nutritional information on the outside.
08. Is It Organic Or Non-GMO Feed?
Inorganic chicken feeds contain many unhealthy chemicals, pesticides, and fillers.
It can significantly affect a chicken’s health and its overall great.
Besides, these harmful substances may get into your body when you eat the chickens’ meat or egg.
Make sure to choose organic or Non-GMO feed to avoid diet-related health issues.
Plus, organic chicken food contains a higher amount of nutrition and Omega-3 levels.
They also taste better as they are made and harvested more naturally.
Before choosing a particular option, ensure they are well-certified and safe to eat.
09. Is the feed mashed or Crumbled?
Another important thing is to consider the pattern of chicken feed.
Is the chicken food mashed or crumbled? Mashed feeds are easier to digest.
Many chicken feeders mix them with hot water to create a porridge-like texture. Some baby chicks love to eat them.
However, research shows they don’t have as much nutrition as crumbled food.
Some nutritional value will be lost when the chicken feed is prepared and blended.
Crumbled chicken feed is broken down into smaller sizes for small beaks.
This type of food is also heated to preserve some nutrients better and allow baby chicks to digest the food easily.
10. How Much are you ready To Spend?
The average price of a five-pound medicated chick starter feed can be anywhere from $6 to $15.
The cost will vary depending on the brand, nutrients, quality, availability, and other factors.
Before choosing a particular option, compare their prices and nutritional value.
Another important thing is to consider the average cost per pound compared to nutrients.
Some brands charge a little more due to their reliability. Make sure the feed is entirely safe for your small feathered friends.
Is It Mandatory To Feed Medicated Chick Starter Feed?
Feeding medicated chick starter feed is not mandatory
But it is often recommended as a preventative measure against certain bacterial infections that can affect young chicks.
The medication in the feed is typically an antibiotic that can help prevent conditions such as coccidiosis.
It can be particularly problematic in crowded or unsanitary conditions.
Some chicken keepers choose not to feed medicated chick starter feed for various reasons.
For example, if you raise chicks in clean and sanitary conditions or prefer to avoid using antibiotics in their poultry.
In such cases, it is vital to take extra care to maintain good hygiene, including providing clean water and bedding and monitoring the chicks closely for signs of illness.
How Long Do You Give Chicks Medicated Feed?
It is a good rule of thumb to start feeding medicated chick starter feed from the very first day once they are hatched.
Small chooks need more nutrients than adult chickens to ensure optimal health growth and boost their immune system.
The protein percentage should be around 18% to 20%. It can sometimes be up to 22%, especially for heavy-breed chicks.
Chicken owners should provide medicated chick starter feed to their baby chicks for up to 4 to 5 weeks.
After passing four or five weeks, increase the regular food amount and decrease the medicated chick starter feed.
Avoid switching to a completely non-medicated chick starter feed suddenly. Small chooks may show unwillingness to eat them as they are not used to them.
You can follow different techniques, such as mixing the feed with hot water or milk to make it palatable.
What Type Of Medicated Chick Starter Feed To Give To Baby Chicks?
If your baby chicks are not vaccinated for coccidiosis, ensure the medicated chick starter feed contains Amprolium.
This ingredient can help decrease the growth of the coccidia oocysts,
It is a coccidiostat that allows baby chicks to develop strong resistance capabilities to fight against coccidia oocysts and other environmental infections.
However, if your small chickens are already vaccinated for coccidiosis, you don’t need to Amprolium-included medicated chick starter feed.
Serving the regular option is okay as their body has already developed a resistance capability to fight against coccidia oocysts.
Tips For Feeding Medicated Chick Starter Feed
You can utilize some tricks to provide the most nutritional value from the medicated chick starter feed.
Here are some pro tips for feeding medicated chick starter feed.
01. Select The Correct Option
Determine the correct type of medicated chick starter feed for your chicks.
Different types of medicated feed are available and may be formulated to prevent various types of infections.
Check with a veterinarian or the feed manufacturer to determine which medicated feed is best for your chicks.
02. Fresh And Clean Water
Provide clean, fresh water at all times.
Small chickens need to drink a good amount of water after eating medicated chick starter feed.
Chicks need access to clean water to stay healthy and hydrated.
Use a waterer designed explicitly for chicks, and refill it regularly.
03. Choose A Decent Functional Feeder
Offer the medicated chick starter feed in a clean feeder.
Use a chick feeder specifically designed to prevent waste and contamination.
Clean the feeder regularly to prevent the growth of bacteria.
04. Start From Day One
Provide the medicated chick starter feed to the chicks from day one.
Chicks need to start eating as soon as they hatch.
Make sure the medicated chick starter feed is available to them from the beginning.
Don’t forget to refill it once the feeder becomes empty. Also, regularly monitor it.
05. Always Track Their Activities
Observe the chicks to make sure they are eating and drinking enough.
Healthy chicks will be active and curious and eat and drink regularly.
Contact a veterinarian if you notice any signs of illness, such as lethargy or lack of appetite.
06. Use The Correct Dosage
Follow the manufacturer’s instructions to add the right amount of medicated chick starter feed.
Using too little may not be practical while using too much can harm the chicks.
Usually, the product package has an instruction regarding how much-medicated chick starter feeds to serve for each chick per meal.
If there is no instruction, call the company and seek help.
Alternatively, you can talk with a veterinarian or experienced poultry to learn the ideal amount to feed.
07. Don’t Mix Medicated And Non-Medicated Feed
Avoid mixing medicated and non-medicated feed in the same feeder.
It is supposed to be served separately without mixing with any else.
Otherwise, the mixture will reduce its effectiveness and waste money.
08. Feed Only For 4 To 6 Weeks
Medicated feed should only be used for a limited period, usually 4-6 weeks
Avoid feeding them after passing of six weeks.
Feeding them for a prolonged period will affect their body negatively.
Extended use can lead to antibiotic resistance in the chicks.
09. Store The Feed Properly
Store the medicated chick starter feed in a cool, dry place, and use it before the expiration date.
Poor storage will decrease its shelf life.
The vital nutrients, such as vitamins, essential fatty acids, and antioxidants, will be lost.
Heat, moisture, and air exposure can degrade the medication and reduce its effectiveness.
10. Monitor The Chicks’ Health
Regularly monitor the chicks for signs of illness, such as lethargy or lack of appetite, and seek veterinary care if necessary.
While medicated feed can help prevent some infections, it is not a substitute for good hygiene and proper care.
Every chicken keeper wants to keep their baby chicks safe and healthy.
Keeping them free from infections or contagious diseases requires feeding high-quality feed to help them develop a robust immune system.
We have already reviewed several medicated chick starter feed. You can choose any option depending on your preference and requirements.
Eric Cooper is a passionate and experienced chicken farmer who has been raising chickens since childhood. Growing up, Eric spent countless hours with his father tending to their family’s flock, and it was during these formative years that he developed a deep appreciation and love for these remarkable birds.
Today, Eric is a seasoned expert in all aspects of chicken farming, with over two decades of experience under his belt. From selecting the right breed and building a coop to feeding and caring for his flock, Eric has honed his skills over the years and is committed to sharing his knowledge with others who share his passion.